Alumni Corner: Food Project Siblings

Working as a young person at The Food Project is an incredibly unique experience. One’s Seed Crew summer is a set of six weeks that not many folks can relate to – imagine if your sibling could!

For at least TWENTY sets of siblings, they can! Throughout The Food Project’s history, many siblings have been through the program, farmed on the same land, and learned about youth, food, and community under the guidance of the same Youth Development Managers. This month, the Alumni Corner is highlighting two of sets of siblings who are both alumni of The Food Project.

Charlene left, Julia right

Julia Fibbe & Charlene Fibbe

Julia (2012 Seed Crew) is a graduate of Purdue University where she studied Agronomy with a concentration in Crop and Soil Management. She now works for Syngenta, a leading agriculture company helping improve global food security by enabling millions of farmers to make better use of available resources. Her favorite TFP veggie is tomatoes, and she is Team Ninja.

Charlene (2018 Seed Crew) is an undergrad at Purdue University studying industrial engineering with a focus on supply chain management as it relates to the food system. Her favorite TFP veggie is carrots, and she is Team Ninja. 


What is your favorite TFP memory?

“One of my favorite TFP memories was during dirt crew 2015 when my team cooked breakfast together at the Long Hill Farm. It was a cold April morning, and we were meeting on the farm to connect as a group and cook breakfast together in the old farmhouse. One of my peers was put in charge of cooking the bacon, and let’s just say there was a lot of smoke involved. As a team, we worked to move our cooking set up outside and finish cooking the breakfast. However, that didn’t stop the fire department from coming and checking on us.” -Julia

“It is difficult to choose a favorite memory at The Food Project because so many are created over the years. Though one of my favorite memories would be one of our mobile market days. This was during my Root Crew summer, and I was with Kidiar, Mariama, and Conner. It was a very hot afternoon, and we were spinning fresh vegetable signs trying to get people to stop at the mobile market. As we were dancing and yelling, we didn’t notice the gray skies forming above us. It wasn’t until we were fighting against the rain that we were putting away the produce. It started to pour and thunder, and we then rushed to the office and ate Italian ices as we did Lynn grow’s work. This wasn’t one of the big moments that I experienced at the food project though it was one of the most impactful as I often think back to those joyful days.” -Charlene


What is it like sharing the TFP community with your sibling?

“The unique community that TFP creates can be hard to explain to others, yet it is one that you want everyone to join and experience for themselves. I had the opportunity to share this experience with my younger sister, Charlene Fibbe, and it was one of the most rewarding experiences. We got to talk and share our experiences deeper due to the general understanding of TFP. I felt more connected to my sister due to our shared experiences.” -Julia

“I think that the lessons learned, and experiences had at The Food Project is not something that someone can fully understand unless they have gone through the program themself. With this being said this has allowed Julia and I to better understand ourselves and each other and to have serious and intelligent conversations.  We were in the program at very different times though many of the supervisors were in the seed crew with Julia such as Omar and Adesuwa. The community built at TFP is a very unique one that allows for the connections that last forever.” -Charlene

Daniela left, Ivana right

Ivana Alecio & Daniela Alecio

Ivana (2019 Seed Crew) is an undergrad at UMass Amherst and her favorite TFP veggie is chipilín. In her free time she loves to be around family and friends and try new foods. She is Team Pirate. 

Daniela (2020 Sprout Crew) is a rising senior in Lynn and her favorite TFP veggies are the cucumbers and snap peas. In her free time she loves to hang out with family and friends. She is Team Ninja.


What is your favorite TFP memory?

“Getting stranded in Gloucester with my crew after working at our HRO. Seems like a bad thing to experience. But, being able to make light of the situation by cracking jokes and just enjoying time with my crew members made it such an amazing memory.” – Ivana

“One of my favorite TFP memories has to be going out with the crew to Andres’s kickball game. It was such a fun time and we ended up playing with him. We went out to eat after and the ride back home was a blast! I may or may not have gotten in trouble for getting home late but it was all worth it.” – Daniela


What is it like sharing the TFP community with your sibling?

“I feel very proud and happy that both my sister and I could be a part of TFP. I remember we both applied at the same time and were told only one of us could work at a time. In the end, it worked out. I got to experience my time at TFP and build my own community. Now, I get to witness my sister doing the same and even more.” – Ivana

“At first, I thought everyone would acknowledge me as Ivana’s little sister but everyone was very welcoming regardless of them knowing that I was her sister! I was glad to be able to share the space with my sister and even hang out with all of them as friends.” -Daniela